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ESPN International Winter Sports 2002

Developer: Konami | Publisher: Konami
Players: 1+ Player Game | Release Date: 01/28/02 | Genre: Sports

Every four years the Winter Olympics draw millions of people around the world to their television sets to watch the top athletes of the world compete for the gold, silver, and bronze medals in a variety of different sports. While the games maybe over in Utah, Konami has provided gamers a way to continue to relive the excitement of several Olympic sports--including: Downhill Alpine Skiing, Slalom Alpine Skiing, K90 Individual Ski Jumping,K120 Individual Ski Jumping, Moguls - Freestyle Skiing, Halfpipe Snowboarding, Speed Skating 500M, Bobsleigh, Curling, and Figure Skating. Although the end result isn't perfect, you may find it entertaining enough to purchase.

ESPN International Winter Sports 2002 is a collection of different mini-games. While it is not officially called "Olympic Games," I assume there was some sort of copyright law that kept Konami from naming it the Olympics. So while you can't officially compete in the Olympic Games, you can actively participate in the next best thing... The funny thing about these games is that there is only one male and female that represents their country in every event. Whether you are Curling, Figure Skating, or even competing in the Speed Skating competition, each country only has one male and one female. It is quite humorous to play through each of the competitions using the same people. Perhaps this was a small oversight by the developers... However, it really does take away from the realism of the game.

Graphically, ESPN International Winter Sports 2002 brings nothing new to the table. However, this does not mean the graphics are bad. With the introduction of "next generation consoles," graphics are just expected to be good.

The sound and music are also just average. However, after about thirty minutes, you will probably mute the volume because it becomes increasingly annoying.

Gameplay in ESPN International Winter Sports 2002 varies depending on which event you choose to participate in. Surprisingly, I found the Figure Skating to be the most playable and fun, as it mimics the gameplay found in Dance Dance Revolution. Most of the controls in the other competitions are relatively the same, with only a few buttons used. All of these are outlined in the manual, which will provide much needed help when playing these competitions.

While ESPN International Winter Sports 2002 provides fun for yourself or with another gamer, I would have preferred to have deeper gameplay instead of only using a few buttons per competition. By limiting the depth of gameplay, the developers made International Winter Sports feel much more like a collection of cheap mini-games. Definitely rent this one before buying.

By Kaleb Rutherford - 08/15/03
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Screenshots for ESPN International Winter Sports 2002

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